When Ticked Off Gay Men Attack: Misogyny As A Knife

Last week when I posted Tribeca Film Festival Promotes Exploitation of Transgender People, I never thought that the call to action would cause controversy within the GLBT community.

As gudbuytjane said about the movie on her blog:

I felt sick. I have seen the lives and even the deaths of trans people appropriated by cis LGB culture before, but I didn’t think anyone would be so crass as to describe in lurid detail the deaths of two trans people (ironic in how quickly many cis gays were to distance Jorge Mercado from any sort of trans identity before) to promote a COMEDY. A drag queen comedy directed by a cissexual gay man. Even more troubling is the pornographic description of their deaths. Do cis people not realize how incredibly triggering and damaging it can be having to read the detailed description of how a trans person was murdered? And then the sickening punch of realizing it was done in the aim of promoting a comedy?

But as I look at the the gay blogosphere this morning I see:

– gay men condescending:

“These large LGBT organizations always seem just one step behind, don’t they. I don’t know if it’s because they are too large to be as nimble as they need to be, or it’s a problem with the leadership, or something else, but fracturing the LGBT community — as they have once again done with this — while obfuscating their own involvement makes all of us LGBTs just a little bit more wary of Gay, Inc.”

The portrayal of GLAAD as causing the fracture in this community instead of the film itself, is stunning. Many transgender people put out a call to action from GLAAD and they responded. GLAAD in this case has truly been a G-L-B-T organization with this call to action.

– gay men defending:

TrannyGate: “Tribeca’s statement corroborates what a star of the film already commented on Movieline, which is that GLAAD had been well aware of the film for close to a year — and had even worked with the filmmakers — but for some reason chose to use the misleading language “was recently alerted” in their press release.”

Which actually isn’t true. From GLAAD’s “Latest on the Call to Action”:

“Last month, GLAAD was asked to meet with the director and cast members prior to seeing the movie to educate them about transgender terminology and issues facing the transgender community. During that meeting, GLAAD was not shown the film and voiced strong concerns about the title and the use of the word “tranny.” While the word is used by some, it is largely an insult that is offensive to many transgender people. The filmmaker has elected to keep it, despite its potential offense.”

– gay men just being downright obscene:

JoeMyGod commenter:

“I might actually want to see this just for the laughter


ps It is 5pm and bilerico has not yet broken this story — surely the biggest outrage of human rights violation for them since transmen in Canada were refused public healthcare funding for the glue they use to attach their plastic penises when hitting the gay bar

An anonymous commenter on the blog of Alexandria Billings wrote:

“Every reiteration of ‘tranny’ stereotypes has the effect of normalising prejudice, unless there’s considerable care taken. No-one so far has suggested that that’s true.”

and I agree. The fact that mainstream sites like Movieline use the word “TrannyGate” without any apology just solidifies the point. I hate to be repetitive, but no one covering Hollywood would “NiggerGate”, “JewGate”, or “FagGate”. The argument that this film is art, dies on the same vine. But this isn’t something I thought I’d have to explain to someone else in the L-G-B-T community. Apparently some gay men didn’t get the memo that misogyny in any form is ugly and condescending hate.

Nelson C. asked on NGBlog:

“Is the blogger suggesting that a gay man lacks understanding on trans issues? She sure did, didn’t she.”

In response, I’ll quote Helen Boyd:

I have been working in and with the trans community for something like 10 years now. I am beginning to understand the incredible variety of lived trans identities. So if you think you’re hip to trans identities and trans lives, you probably aren’t. That doesn’t mean you can’t be an ally. That doesn’t mean you don’t care about the trans community. But what it might mean, and often does mean, is that when you have an entire community reeling in horror from a phrase (“hot tranny mess”) or a film (like this one), then maybe, just maybe, you need to shut up & listen & not pull this patriarchal bullshit. Being gay (or a member of whatever other oppressed group) does not give a person instant knowledge of and deep compassion with other people’s suffering. What it gives you is a chance to empathize — a chance that you will waste entirely if you always think you’re right.

Instead of doing that, Nelson says:

“When you have people suggesting that a gay man is incapable of understanding trans issues or is at a deficit because he’s gay, then perhaps it’s time to reconsider the T in LGBT.”

And there it is. If you don’t like it, shut the fuck up or get off the bus.

But it’s GLAAD and the trans-community who are fracturing the community….


  1. mzmartipants March 29, 2010
  2. Rachel March 29, 2010
  3. mzmartipants March 29, 2010
  4. Melody March 29, 2010
  5. Kathy March 29, 2010
  6. Samantha March 29, 2010
  7. JMG March 29, 2010
  8. mzmartipants March 30, 2010
  9. Nelson G March 30, 2010
  10. Nelson G March 30, 2010
  11. Nelson G March 30, 2010
  12. Ashley Love March 30, 2010
  13. mzmartipants March 31, 2010
  14. mzmartipants March 31, 2010
  15. mzmartipants March 31, 2010
  16. mzmartipants March 31, 2010
  17. mzmartipants March 31, 2010
  18. mzmartipants March 31, 2010
  19. Kathy March 31, 2010
  20. ginasf April 1, 2010
  21. Tommesha_a October 16, 2010

Add Comment

Part II, The History – The Rise and Fall of #DiscoSexology: Dr. Zucker, CAMH, & Conversion Therapy
Johns Hopkins Resumes Trans Care
The New York Magazine lies to parents about trans children
The media is lying about why NC is being sued
Part VIII, Interview the Author of The Last Time I Wore A Dress – The Rise and Fall of #DiscoSexology: Dr. Zucker, CAMH, & Conversion Therapy
Part VII, Interview With Affirmative Therapy Pioneer – The Rise and Fall of #DiscoSexology: Dr. Zucker, CAMH, & Conversion Therapy
Part VI, Interview With Gender Infinity Co-Founder – The Rise and Fall of #DiscoSexology: Dr. Zucker, CAMH, & Conversion Therapy
Part V, Interview With Zucker’s Patient – The Rise and Fall of #DiscoSexology: Dr. Zucker, CAMH, & Conversion Therapy
Campus Free Speech and Sophistry
Owning Endosex Privilege and Supporting the Intersex Community: WPATH, Intersex Genital Mutilation (IGM), and Sex Variant Bodies
The Gill Foundation & NCTE choose money over trans lives
In Memory of Terri Williams Moore (1941–1976)
The Gill Foundation & NCTE choose money over trans lives
The Politics of Transphobia
Fight back: Report Mississippi & North Carolina HATE here!
The 2008 Gainesville Bathroom Bill TV Spot Revisited